Protective effects of nocardia delipidated cell mitogen on the mucosa of the small intestine after irradiation of germ-free piglets.


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The radioprotective effect of the bacterial immunomodulator Nocardia delipidated cell mitogen (NDCM) on intestinal mucosa and disaccharidase activities was studied in irradiated germ-free piglets. Three-week-old germ-free (GF) piglets were intragastrically pretreated with 1 mg NDCM per 1 kg body weight. The piglets were whole-body irradiated with 2.5 Gray five days after the NDCM pretreatment and sacrificed eight days after irradiation. In the non-irradiated group of GF piglets, NDCM application stimulated lactase activity and markedly increased sucrase activity. This stimulatory effect of NDCM disappeared after irradiation and the piglets exhibited a normal activity of lactase in the jejunal brush-border membrane vesicles, while the sucrase activity decreased to the level found in irradiated controls. NDCM-pretreated intestinal mucosa contained some infrequent lymphocytes which disappeared from the control irradiated tissue. It also exhibited less injury of the epithelium and stroma cells.